Exogenous shocks and electoral outcomes

Kaustav Das, Atisha Ghosh, Pushkar Maitra

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review


Do voters react to shocks that are beyond the control of politicians? We consider the case of the assassination of a senior politician in India, in the middle of an election. We find that Congress(I), the party of the assassinated leader, gained significantly from this event through increased vote shares and improved likelihood of victory. Sympathy towards Congress(I) and changed perceptions about governing abilities of the contesting parties in the post-assassination environment played crucial roles in determining the final outcomes of the election. Our results imply that even in environments where voters are expected to make their decisions based on prior performance of parties, an unanticipated, random, exogenous event can affect voting behaviour.

Original languageEnglish
Number of pages35
JournalPublic Choice
Publication statusAccepted/In press - 2024


  • Assassination
  • D72
  • Election outcomes
  • Exogeneous shocks
  • H12
  • P16

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